Wallaby's new mobile app unlocks its universal payment card and cloud wallet magic

By Michael Carney , written on November 16, 2012

From The News Desk

Apps that save their users money are sure to be popular among consumers. Those that do so while also making their lives easier have the chance to be a massive hit. Cloud-based smart wallet Wallaby financial falls squarely into the latter camp with its Web app and one credit card to rule them all product. Today, the company adds a much anticipated mobile app (iPhone only) to deliver on-the-go flexibility to its users.

“Every day that goes by, consumers seem to be more confused about which credit card will get them the most points or rewards,” said Matthew Goldman, CEO and Founder, Wallaby Financial. “Our new app makes it easy for consumers to eliminate the confusion, and use their credit cards in the most advantageous way.”

Wallaby offers users a Visa branded payment card that relies on proprietary real-time algorithms to dynamically and intelligently switch between all the other credit cards currently in a user’s wallet to maximize savings and rewards. At the time of purchase, Wallaby makes a real-time recommendation for which card to route a payment through based on factors such as the type of transaction, limited time offers available from the retailer, and card rewards.

While users previously had to set rules and preferences in advance via the company’s Web dashboard, they can now do so on the go. This functionality completes the vision that CEO and founder Matthew Goldman sold investors and early users when he began building the company. The idea is that Wallaby makes the decisions for its users, but that at any time the user can manually override these decisions at the time of purchase for the ultimate in flexibility and control.

For example, the universal Wallaby card may be programmed to direct all purchases of gasoline to a personal card that gets the most airline mile rewards, but a user may wish to override this for a single transaction and instead direct it to their business card. With the new Wallaby app, this is possible, and both the business and personal card can be left at home.

Wallaby is a Winter 2012 graduate of Santa Monica’s MuckerLab accelerator and raised a $1.1 million seed round led by Founders Fund’s FF Angel and WI Harper Group, with participation from SLP Ventures, Lion Wells Capital, Quotidian Ventures, Karlin Ventures, and additional angel investors.

The young startup’s biggest challenge since launching the product publicly this summer has been onboarding users. The company has onboarded thousands of users, but still has tens of thousands of wouldbe users on its waiting list. The startup is slowly opening the doors, but could stand to do so much faster.

The good news is that the new Wallaby app is available for everyone to download today, and can be used to make smart card usage decisions immediately. Unfortunately, users still need to join the waiting list to receive a Wallaby Card and take advantage of the full power of the system.

The mobile wallet market is wide open at the moment, but there are dozens of competitors vying for control over consumers’ spending. If Wallaby is to be a long-term part of the solution, it needs to grab a large enough portion of the market soon that it has a loyal base to drive word-of-mouth going forward. And it needs to generate revenue to can keep the lights on and make investors happy.

The company is introducing its new mobile app at a busy time for consumers, with Black Friday and the final weeks of holiday shopping season around the corner. Consumers who get to use the Wallaby card and app this season are likely to receive enormous benefit and become loyal users. Those who are forced to wait may turn to another competing solution in the meantime.

Wallaby will likely get the real world data it needs between now and the end of the year to confidently flip the switch and open its user floodgates. This is a moment that can’t come too soon.